I am embarrassed to admit it, but it’s time I start taking care of myself. For eleven years I’ve always put everyone else’s needs before mine. The only time I do is when I’m past the breaking point. But that’s only a Band-Aid…no way to live. What am I teaching my kids?
Certainly I’m not the only parent who goes down this road. This morning I was thinking about how I had to get through the next six months and then my youngest will be in kindergarten. THEN I will start to take care of myself. Wait a minute. I’m going to wait for another half-year to pass before I even consider taking care of myself? That’s ridiculous.
I woke up this morning thinking about a challenge my friend, Kelly, gave me. She suggested a group of us start to working out together, holding each other accountable. Seems like a great idea – start firming up my jiggles before I need to show off my legs this summer. I have always had a decent body image…at least as an adult and I quit listening to things like “that would look better if you dropped five pounds.” I simply decided that I didn’t want to go through life starving or have food/exercise rule my life. I saw too many girls in college have unhealthy relationships with both and refused to go down that path.
Yeah, I could be smaller…but I could be bigger. Just like I could have more money or I could have less. We could have a bigger house, or smaller. Our car could be fancier or a P.O.S. See what I mean? Be happy with what you have. Life’s too short to waste time focusing on that crap.
However, I’m in my early 40s now and my body ain’t what is used to be! I’ve had three boys (two by cesarean,) a hysterectomy and back surgery – all which have definitely changed my shape. Like most parents, I’ve spent that last decade in survival mode. Kids, coffee, lack of sleep, repeat. It’s time I start getting a strong, healthy body back. If only to be able to keep up with my kids! I’m way too young to be unable to hike or ski with my kids. So, time to start getting stronger.
Over-eating has never been my issue. If anything the opposite is my problem. Nobody ever talks about how some of us would rather not eat if there’s nothing desirable in the fridge. I hate left-overs. If I have to see or even think about meat I cannot eat it. (I think in another life I was vegan.) I don’t like sandwiches. Granola bars are stupid…same with protein bars. Yuck. So, I would rather chug another cup of coffee or a Dr. Pepper to grab some quick energy. I would rather pull thistles all day in the yard without gloves than spend ten minutes in the kitchen making dinner. The cookie jar can be full of Oreos and I won’t even notice. So, I guess I maybe do have a weird relationship with food.
Maybe if I lived in a different culture I would love all their food? I’m going to start seeking out other cuisines to find one that fits me. It’s better to model eating different food than not eating at all to the kids right? I love fruits and veggies…especially grilled ones. I should start there. But, if you’re like me, you go to the organic grocer with the best intentions and come home with a boat-load of produce. Most of which goes bad before you are motivated again to actually cook it. Ugh. Might as well throw cash directly into the trash. It’s so wasteful.
My hubby used to be in awe of how I could eat fast food several days a week and not change weight. (Actually he cursed it.) Now, for those of you that know me, you may say that my family has good genes and we all look pretty good for not being work-out freaks. Yes, I know that. However, that’s no excuse. Not everyone is so lucky. My husband decided a few years ago that he was going to make time to take care of his health. He had two hip surgeries before he was 30 and it’s been a long road to rehab. Being a natural athlete who loves to run, it has been hard for him to work slowly back without re-injuring something. Now he runs several miles a week…and he couldn’t be happier. He runs on the treadmill and watches movies with the kids or they workout together. He’s being a great role-model.
Since my kids are getting older I don’t want them to out-ski or out-hike me. Living in Colorado, you will meet a lady in her 60s on the ski-lift who’s been a skier for 40+ years and can do a double-black diamond run. Crazy, right? (FYI – those are the scary ones!)
I know that I will always get winded hiking the steps at Red Rocks Amphitheater, (everyone does) but I don’t want my kids to out-run me on a camping trip. It’s time to get stronger. Just because I’m approaching mid-life doesn’t mean I’m resigned to becoming a wimp or lazy. It’s time to kick my metabolism in gear and burn off these jiggles.
Someday, I want to be the lady on the ski lift telling the youngsters to have a good day…then make them eat my powder!